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great american music hall

Black Francis Celebrates the Birthday of The Pixies' 'Doolittle' With A Pair of Bay Area Shows

Which Pixies album is your favorite? Mine is Doolittle, which I knew back to front in my high school days. It's hard to believe the timeless alt-rock album celebrates its 20th anniversary today, but I'm not complaining because that means Black Francis, also known as Frank Black, the voice behind the Pixies, is in full force supporting his masterpiece.

Freelance Whales and Shout Out Louds @ Great American

It's hard not to have a good time at The Great American Music Hall. Every single band I've ever seen there has stopped mid-show to comment on the remarkable (and well-kept) hand-detailed carpentry on the interior. That being said, the perfection sometimes stops there.

Interview: The Freelance Whales' Judah Dadone

The Freelance Whales have managed to craft one of those songs that gets in your ears and won't quit. It's called "Generator^1st Floor", and I'm not just speaking for myself. Other indie forces like the Antlers and Aislyn (a side project of Passion Pit's keyboardist Ian Hultquist) have remixed and recut the song in their own oblique homages to the original's acoustic delicacy and swelling, textural layers of banjos, Micro Korgs, tambourines and vocal harmonies.

Jump In: Talking To Midlake Before Its Great American Show

After seeing Midlake open for the Flaming Lips at Noise Pop a few years back, I would have never suspected that the way-quiet, almost lo-fi indie rockers would produce one of the finest, most ambitious albums of 2010 thus far. Yet that’s just what you have with the release of the Denton, Texas, band’s new The Courage of Others (Bella Union), a tribute to and continuation of the legacy of rusticated folk-rock forebears like early Fleetwood Mac, as well as the deep drink from the ever-yielding wellspring created by ‘60s English folk revivalists like Fairport Convention.

Sleepless Nights: SF Pays Tribute to Gram Parsons

"Sleepless Nights" was supposed to be the second track on Gram Parsons' posthumously released second album, Grievous Angel, and the album's title. But jealous of Gram's relationship with Emmylou Harris, she pulled the track, along with three others featuring Emmylou, and it wasn't released until 1976's Sleepless Nights, an album consisting mainly of covers and the three dropped Grievous Angel tracks. Eight years ago, Eric Shea tried to get in touch with the people behind the Cosmic American Music Festival at Joshua Tree, where Parsons died in 1973 of a booze/morphine overdose at the age of 26.

Cool Rules: Why? Plunges Into ‘Eskimo Snow’

Why?’s Yoni Wolf is something of a pocket indie-rock/hip-hop genius, positioned right in our East Bay backyard, hidden in plain sight. You might spy him jogging around Oakland’s Piedmont neighborhood or washing up at choice underground shows at 21 Grand. And otherwise you can catch him all over the new Why? disc, Eskimo Snow (Anticon), or live at Great American Music Hall Oct. 17 with a new five-piece lineup including Andrew Broder and Mark Erickson of the Fog.

Robert Plant at Great American Music Hall Tonight

This just in: Robert Plant will perform a song with opener Buddy Miller tonight at GAMH as part of the Boz Scaggs & the Blue Velvet Band benefit show. Tickets are NOT SOLD OUT. Proceeds will go to the Richard de Lone Special Housing Project, a nonprofit that provides state-of-the-art facilities and care for children and adults with Prader-Willi Syndrome.

Breakout Band: SF's Deerhoof at Great American Music Hall

Disregard the title of Deerhoof’s latest album, Offend Maggie (Kill Rock Stars, 2008), the Bay Area band never offends.

Rather, the up-from-the-underground foursome specializes in subverting your assumptions of what constitutes a rock-out number and what kind of unholy, Maggie-outraging roar guitars, drums, and bass can generate – all with a playful wink and friendly nod to indie’s avant-garde, as well as rock standard bearers like Radiohead, who Deerhoof toured with a while back.

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